Instead of the long rows of black-washed bulletproof cars entering amidst police sirens in the busy city streets, the French President on his visit to Delhi today got a taste of the busy metropolitan lifestyle by taking the metro along with the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Taking the metro to Gurgaon City in Haryana where the city's thriving infrastructure is located, the two representatives shared seat on the same row while watching the towering landscape as the train moved ahead.
Though the French President's commute on the Delhi metro may be a casual glance cast around the city, this short visitation is nothing less than purely symbolic. Most of the MOUs signed between India and France are significantly related to the growing infrastructural facility of India. France had earlier announced that they would assist India in the development of smart cities. The announcement came during two back-to-back meetings which the visiting head of state, along with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, held with the corporate leaderships of the two countries. The first meeting was with the Indo-French CEOs Forum.
The two countries have pitched in to ameliorate the infrastructural facilities in India through new railway projects, rejuvenation of rivers, and the upgrading of locomotives and their stations. This particular ride through Delhi is an affirmation by both the countries to expand and focus on the growth of city infrastructure.
At the India-France Business Summit, the agenda for discussions included defence, green economy, smart cities, infrastructure, transportation, water and financial sector.
Hollande is in India as this year's chief guest for the Republic Day celebrations on January 26.